Seasonal Allergy Diagnosis
- What It Is
- Risk Factors
- Living With
- User Questions
- Alternative Treatment
- Care Guide
- Questions for Your Doctor
- When to Contact a Doctor
- Find a Doctor
- Resource Guide
How to Diagnose Seasonal Allergy
Your doctor or allergist will begin by taking a detailed medical history, which will include questions about your lifestyle, eating habits, family and medical history, and medication use. Your doctor will also do a physical exam and will check inside your nose for signs of inflammation.
Testing for allergic rhinitis may include:
- Skin test -Skin testing is one of the easiest, most sensitive, and least expensive ways to diagnose allergic rhinitis. A tiny allergen particle is placed under the skin with a needle. In 80% of cases, an allergic response is confirmed if the skin becomes raised or red within 20 minutes.
- RAST blood test-For this test, your doctor will take a blood sample to determine the level of antibody production in your body. This test is used to detect levels of immunoglobulin in response to a specific allergen. Such blood tests are less accurate than skin tests and should be done only when skin tests are not available.
- Nasal smear-A sample of your nasal secretions may be taken and examined to identify the cause of the rhinitis or to rule out other allergic conditions.
- Nasal endoscopy-To aid in diagnosis, a tiny fiberoptic camera may be used to view more deeply inside your nose.